The Kurdish Peace Feast

“Can we just have 10 seconds of silence, please?” a Kurdish man asked.

It was our Kurdish Peace Feast. Three of his relatives had been killed by the ISIS group last week. He wanted us to honor their memory.

The feelings were raw in the room. Some were emotional and passionate.

“The US spent six million dollars for a tank that ISIS took from the Iraqi army and is now using against my people.”

Just days ago, this man had returned from a village caught between ISIS forces and the Yazidi people trapped on Mount Sinjar.

Saturdays with Matthew, Hummus & Friends

Most Saturday mornings Susan fixes a great breakfast. Friends arrive around 10. Sometimes as late as 10:30. Some are Iranian. Some are Palestinian, others Turkish, Pakistani, American and Yemeni. We always have halal food for our Muslim friends. Most weeks they pitch in. We have traditional eggs and pancakes mixed with dolma, samoosas, hummus and borek. Savory and sweet, somehow it all comes together over Turkish chai and American coffee. We were going to call it “Brunch and Share,” but we are friends, so most just call it breakfast. Fridays we send out a text message, “Are you coming to breakfast this week?” Six to ten usually show up.

“How did your week go?”

“Pretty good. Are you feeling better?”

The FBI came to our Somali Peace Feast

The FBI agent was a sharply dressed young woman. I wondered why she was attending the Somali Peace Feast. Another friend who works with local internationals said this FBI agent had been a friend to the international community helping both the agency and the local police department be more sympathetic with the immagrant populations.